Bijapur district is historically, traditionally and legendarily, one of the richest districts in the state. The evidence found here reveals that it was an inhabited place since the Stone Age.
Bijapur, officially known as Vijayapura, is situated in Karnataka, India. It is well known for its historical monuments of architectural importance built during the rule of the Adil Shahi dynasty.
The city was established in the 10th-11th centuries by the Kalyani Chalukyas and was known as Vijayapura (City of victory). Yadavas ruled after Chalukyas. In 1347, it was conquered by the Bahmani Sultanate and then Bijapur Sultanate ruled from the city. Relics of the Sultanates’ rule can be found in the city even today.
Gol Gumbaz was ordered to built by Mohammed Adil Shah, the seventh ruler of Adil Shah dynasty. So, he wanted to make a mark by not getting lost in the emirates. To do this, everything in Gol Gumbaz has to do with numerical seven. For Eg – he built seven floors in Gol Gumbaz
Gol Gumaz’s dome is the second-largest (144 meters in diameter) in the world after Rome’s St Peter’s Basicila!.
The view from the Whispering Gallery after climbing seven floors.
The fence guard’s (tiny arches on the extreme top of this photo) height is merely 2-3 feet and you can see straight down 30 feet! Hence I chickened out from standing near the fence.
Adil Shah’s throne was placed in the hollow space on the right side.
Four hollow spaces in the left are where his mother, wives and other important female members used to sit during any performance. The floor on the left is a slope from high to low towards the center. This was done for the sole purpose so the gold coins reach the center to the artists where they were performing.
The long arches on the wall are in the Persian, Islamic and Indo style architecture.
The podium in the center has a wooden canopy which is the exact position of the grave of Mohammed Adil Shah.
The Archaeological Museum
See the first photo on this blog? The facade is converted into a museum now. The interiors do NOT look like a museum at all. It feels like you’re walking inside a palace literally with all the artifacts surrounding you (with its details, of course!).
There is a long and narrow flight of stairs which take you on the first floor but only one man can pass by at a time! We had to wait in queue for your chance.
There were porcelain dishes imported from Chinese traders from the 16th century!
Read about my Badami, Aihole and Patadakkal stories of Day 1 and 2 here.
On day 3, we contacted Mr. Ramesh again for sightseeing around Bijapur which was another brilliant decision by us. He charged INR 1200 for half day sightseeing. He traveled on his scooter while we were in the auto (INR 1000) with our luggage.
Jama Masjid was built to celebrate the Talikote victory by Adil Shah. The front represents with nine large arches with five inner arches of 45 compartments.
The building was designed by the Persian architect Malik Sandal with the sentence of Quraan are beautifully covered on the walls. Ibrahim Roza is the tomb of Ibrahim Adil Shah II with his two sons and his mother on the left and on the right side with a mosque set in a walled garden facing over an attractive pond.
(Below image) When spoken in front of space in this structure, we could hear the same sound in the opposite structure! Mind-blowing, isn’t it?
This is a huge cannon set up by Muhammad Adil Shah I in 1549. It is on top of Sherzah Burj.
A unique feature that is even in the hot scorching sun it remains cool (yes, we touched it and felt the coolness) and in the night it is warm enough for humans to touch. This was achieved because of the right metals mixed in the right proportion! What a marvel for the 15th century!
When gently tapped, it tinkles softly like a bell.
An architect from Turkey was called just to make this cannon and he has inscribed Turkish prayer on this cannon for the generations to remember him.
Almost 2 km away from Bijapur district, this focal curve of Gagan Mahal is the tallest and most stretched out among all the curves found in Bijapur. We didn’t know of this place unfortunately, the photos are beautiful. Try not to miss this.
As per the prediction of one of the astrologer, Afzal Khan would not return after meeting Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj to Bijapur. Fearing this, he slit his 64 wives’ throats so they could not remarry.
Jod Gumbaz is also known as Two Sisters. It is said if prayed here, our wishes come true. The architectural marvel here also is such that if you stand at an entrance of one gate, you can clearly see the shrine in the other gumbaz through its gate!
This structure is 80 feet high and roughly has 80 steps to reach on top. It is alike watch tower built during the regime of Adilsha by major Hyderkhan in 1583. You can see the city of Bijapur fort around with 3 prominent domes visible- the Gol Gumbaz, the Jama Masjid, the Jod Gumbaz, and Ibrahim Rouza
This place is located about six kilometers from Bijapur. It’s a place of arts and culture. Artisans, dancers, musicians used this place to practice and teach their respective art during the Deccan Sultanate period. This mahal was built by Ibrahim Adil Shah.
I hope Bijapur is interesting for you to go and explore for yourself now. If you have any more doubts, drop it in the comments below and I will answer them.
Other blogs you might find blogs interesting :
Badami, Aihole and Patadakkal stories of Day 1 and 2 here.
Exploring Harappan Civilization! Read here.
Hampi, Hippie Island– Read here
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